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Therese Thomas photo

Therese Thomas photo

With 15+ years as a dressage trainer and competitor, USDF Silver and Bronze Medalist Dane Lawrence has worked successfully with many breeds. One that he finds challenging but equally rewarding is the off-the-track Thoroughbred (OTTB).

Says Dane, “For dressage, an OTTB has to learn a new way of moving and relating to the rider. Because they are bred to run at top speed, rebalancing them to be light on the forehand and engaged behind takes time. They have to become attuned to different rein and leg aids and learn to move in a rounder, more elevated frame. But if you’re patient, the Thoroughbred can be a terrific partner.”

Patience has definitely paid dividends with Dane’s latest OTTB in training, Warren’s Payday, a 10-year-old gelding owned by client Diane Bumford. “When I started working with Warren, I had to resolve not only his racehorse tendencies, but also his discomfort from past racing injuries and pain from ulcers. But once we got him feeling better, he started to relax and is now progressing quite well.”

Based at Courtship Ranch, a beautiful boarding facility in Lake View Terrace, Dane offers full-service training, lessons, sales, as well as purchasing services. He recently returned from a buying trip in Germany where he attended the Hanoverian auction in Verden. But, it was through Hannes Baumgart, one of his private contacts, that Dane found and purchased a promising 3-year-old Hanoverian for Lyles Perkins, owner of Courtship Ranch. The young gelding will be a new competition horse for Lyles under Dane’s guidance.

(818)399-5643 www.courtshipranch.com

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